Walking is a great form of exercise. It can improve fitness and may help reduce weight but walking has many other great benefits for your body. Walking requires no special skill, talent, or equipment and is simple to do!
Benefits of walking on a regular basis may include:
.reducing your risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes
.lowering high blood pressure
.helps control joint swelling and pain from arthritis
.good for your brain: may reduce risk of developing dementia
.reduces risk for breast and colon cancer
.helps reduce stress and alleviate symptoms of depression
.good for your bones
.may help relieve fibromyalgia pain
.may reduce use of medications (only with a physicians approval)
Experts suggest that 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity, like brisk walking, on most days of the week is appropriate to see health benefits. The 30 minutes does not have to be all at once and can be broken up into 10 minute intervals.
Options for achieving the 10 minute intervals can include using the stairs instead of the elevator, parking your car at the far end of the parking lot, or walking around your building during your lunch time or break time.
When first starting a walking routine, start slow and gradually increase your intensity or duration. Listen to music or walk with a friend. If you feel like you are having trouble staying consistent with a walking program then schedule the time like a meeting – for your health – on your calendar or set a reminder on your phone.
Remember, whether you need to lose weight or not, walking has many great benefits for your body, both mentally and physically. If you have questions or would like more tips on starting a walking program, please feel free to contact our physical therapists at Advance Physical Therapy at 636-528-7333.